Published on 01/07/2021

Picture of St Andrew's Church in Sampford Courtenay

Dear church family,

In light of the Lockdown 3 announcements yesterday, an update as far as our churches are concerned....

Pleasingly, and somewhat surprisingly, communal worship can continue (in England at least). See the Government guidance here:

and the Church of England's response here:

So although many other spheres of life are locking down again, Sunday services are still permitted, and can happen broadly under the same circumstances in place from the beginning of December. 

I gather from information sent out to clergy today, one reason for the continued allowance of Sunday services is that it seems only 47 Covid cases so far in England have in some way been linked to places of worship since March 2020... a tiny proportion. 

So having consulted the church wardens, we will be continuing with Sunday services in the usual pattern across our churches. Honeychurch being such a small building may be the exception. We'll review the situation for St Mary's in February. 

However, there will be no other non-service related church gatherings (home groups, prayer groups, choir rehearsals, PCC meetings etc) until further notice. 

We think we will still offer Be Still at Sampford Courtenay later this month, as this is a service of public worship. And we may do a North Tawton version too. 

For those that wish to attend Sunday services in person, we must reiterate all the Covid-safe measures that have worked so successfully thus far... 

Hands, Face, Space... choir/band only permitted to sing indoors. 

Bread only at communion. 

Funerals limited to 30 people. 

Ordinary services carry no limits on capacity, as long as social distancing is maintained. 

Face-coverings should be worn. 

We will continue to record and upload at least one service a week. Viewable here:

We fully understand that some will feel the need to stay away from services in church, perhaps now including some who have been coming in recent weeks too. 

Just because we continue to offer in-person worship doesn't mean you should feel undue pressure to be there.

Having said that though, we would not be offering services at all if we did not think they were as safe as possible.

In the meantime, remember...

....perspective and prayer, hope and holiness...

....count your blessings, and be careful what you absorb from the thoughtlessly obsessive news-media (!)

Looking forward to Plough Sunday services this weekend: 9.30am in Sampford Courtenay, and 11am in North Tawton.

Do stay in touch.


Image with 'May Gods love light your way and lead your into a new year that shines with his special joy. Happy New Year'

Happy New Year!

After a tough 2020, and a Christmas like no other, we are all hoping for a better 2021.

There is every reason to be full of hope for the months ahead... Jesus still being Lord, vaccines, spring weather, days getting longer, maybe some snow (that's a good thing in my household!)

But patient forbearance continues to be needed for the time-being, as it looks like much of life is going to continue to be affected by Covid restrictions for quite some time yet. Church life is no different. 

Our policy as church families since March has been... "If we can meet we will meet". So as long as we are permitted, we will continue with Sunday services throughout this winter, following the usual pattern. 

Only Honeychurch will not have a service this month.

We really hope you will feel able to come to church throughout the winter. Many of you did over Christmas, which was great - a real boost to everyone.

One hopes that as more people are vaccinated and the spring weather comes, the situation will subside enough that we can be back to full strength as churches as soon as possible.

So, this Sunday (3rd January).... wrap up warm!

9.30am Morning Worship at Sampford Courtenay

9.30am Parish Communion at Bondleigh

11am Morning Worship at North Tawton

Then, Plough Sunday services on Sunday 10th January at SC and NT.

Do check here for updates and online worship.



Image of red baubles lined up with Christmas Carol Service across the top

Sampford Courtenay's Carol Service is now viewable online. See the link here...


Wishing you a very joyful, peaceful and hopeful Christmas and New Year!




Picture of a cross in front of a blue sky with clouds with the words Sunday Service across the centre

Hi all,

All things considered, we had a great Carol Service last Sunday at St Peter's. Including the choir and 10 children, 60 people were there to hear good news of great joy, most of whom are not regular church goers.

So I'm really pleased we went ahead. Clearly the appetite for live in person services this Christmas remains good, despite all that is going on.

The service was filmed and can be accessed here:

and here:


THIS SUNDAY (20th Dec):

11am Informal Communion as usual at St Peter's, and there will be further Carol Services later in the day at HC, BL and SC. Details on the attached flier.

The carol service at Sampford Courtenay will be the follow-up to the one at St Peter's last weekend... different carols, different readings and different address. It will also be filmed.



Tuesday 22nd: 7pm Carol Singing OUTDOORS in the Square at Sampford Courtney, followed by the pub garden. 

Christmas Eve: 4pm Nativity Service OUTDOORS in the churchyard at St Peter's, so that we can sing carols together (distanced between households)


Both of these outdoor events could not be easier for inviting friends and family to. 


Further details of services including "midnights" and 11am Christmas Communion on 25th at St Peter's are all on the attached flier. 


Advent devotional 4... Of the Father's love begotten:


Merry Christmas!


Poster showing dates, times, and locations of Christmas Services

Hello everyone,

Happy Advent Sunday and St Andrew's Day!

3 things to share with you today...

1. Patronal Service from St Andrew's Sampford Courtenay: thanks to Roger, Richard and the choir, John, Rita, Avril and Julie for all their input into this one...

(look out for the dodgy match!)

2. Advent Devotional No. 1... O Come O Come Emmanuel, recorded in St Mary's Honeychurch

(with a bird and a noisy fly) 

3. Be Still prayer sheet prepared by Rita (see below)


Advent and Christmas services.... (see poster)

So we are coming out of lockdown shortly and heading into tier 2. Fortunately, the Gov and C of E have confirmed that public worship in church can happen regardless of tier.

So our published programme of services throughout December will be happening, starting next Sunday (6th Dec) with...

9.30am Parish Communion in Bondleigh

9.30am Christingle in Sampford Courtenay

11am Christingle in North Tawton

3pm Evensong with Communion in Honeychurch

The situation in church will be much as it was before the November lockdown... distancing, face-coverings, and no congregational singing (but we will have lots of music).

The Carol services will be a bit different this year. They will be shorter and more reflective than normal, they will be filmed, and the choir only will sing. Please come in person if you are able to, and bring others.

We would love to see you, and it would really boost those of us involved in planning them to have at least some people in the building with us (!)

Outdoor carol singing is permitted, so we are working on moving the 4pm Christmas Eve Nativity service into the churchyard at St Peter's. 

O come, thou Dayspring, come and cheer

our spirits by thine Advent here



Picture of a cross in front of a blue sky with clouds with the words Sunday Service across the centre

Dear all,

A service for the 22nd Nov, the Sunday next before Advent:0

Thank you to Rita, Danny and Jane for their help with this one.

Recorded in St James Bondleigh, but with a little help from Christians in:

Cape Town (In Christ Alone)

Sydney (Jesus Strong and Kind) and

Houston (Blessed Assurance)

Alongside all the limitations on worship this year, one of the blessings has been connecting with Christians across cultures and throughout the world via the internet.

Often they sing the same things as us!

For next Sunday (29th Nov), we will be filming in St Andrew's Sampford Courtenay for their Patronal Service, with a few members of our choir singing, and John Courtie preaching. 

Sunday 6th December: we hope to be back in all four church buildings with congregations present, but this is yet to be confirmed. We await Gov and C of E announcements. 

Shoeboxes: I think we must be near 60 filled boxs now. Thank you to those who have done an extra one recently.  

They are all piled up in St Peter's waiting until lockdown ends, when they will be taken to Exeter, before heading off on their journey to children in Eastern Europe in time for Christmas.

There are still about 10 flat unfilled boxes in the church. It would be great if we could get them all filled. If you can do another, do pop in and take one. 

Filled boxes can be dropped off in the Rectory porch up until Monday 7th December when they will start their journey.


Best wishes,





Picture of a cross in front of a blue sky with clouds with the words Sunday Service across the centre

Dear all,


Please find today's (Sunday 15th) here:

...and the same and lots more here:

Thank you to Rita and Pippa for your input in this one. You will see that I have mastered the art of inserting music videos into the service.

But I have not mastered how to balance the sound level of the videos to match the talking. So you will find the music comes in quite loud (!) Be ready on the volume button!


Before November lockdown, we had a North Tawton Prayer Meeting scheduled for this Monday evening (16th) at 7.30pm. That meeting will now be on Zoom.

Do join us to pray. Please log in before 7.30pm and wait in the "waiting room". That way we can start prompt at 7.30pm and not waste too much time Zoom-faffing and not praying.

Invite here...


Meeting ID: 369 904 2915

Passcode: 910408

Image of a poppy wreath with Lest We Forget written across

A service for Remembrance Sunday was filmed in St Andrew's Church earlier this week and is available for viewing using the following link.


Picture of St. Andrews Church

Dear church folks,

So we are now in a month-long lockdown. First and foremost, I would encourage you to keep praying and keep positive in these challenging days...

Give thanks for.... 

continued low Covid numbers in our area

16 weeks of safe fruitful worship in our churches since 5th July

for the on-going neighbourliness across our communities

Jesus still being Lord and still building his church


Please pray for...

those unwell in any way

local livelihoods

those feeling lonely and missing family/friends

the Government as they continue to make impossibly difficult decisions


So in line with the new lockdown measures, there will be no in-person services or other church gatherings until the first Sunday in December.

This month we will focus on providing lots of imaginative online worship and gatherings, starting with this weekend (see below). 

Our churches will remain open for private prayer, and funerals. Please do stay in touch with each other, and don't hesitate to get in touch with Rita or myself if there is anything we can help you with - spiritually or practically. 

Sunday worship will restart as soon as we are allowed to have it again, and it is our intention to run as full an Advent and Christmas program as possible, but final decisions on many things could be quite late in the day.

Please find a flier for download below containing all our plans for November Lockdown 2020, including details about Thursday Prayer during November.

Operation Christmas Child Shoeboxes.... the collection and processing of shoeboxes nationally across England has been pushed back until December (you know why!) So this gives us the opportunity to do more boxes.

There are currently 51 filled shoeboxes in St Peter's Church. Can we get it to 70 by the end of the month? 

We still have quite a few flat-packed empty boxes available. I'll leave a load at the back of St Peter's, so do come and fetch one, or let me know and I can deliver one to you (surely an essential journey!)

This weekend... (8th November):

10.45am a small outdoor Remembrance Sunday service at the War Memorial in North Tawton (still going ahead, but shorter and even more socially distanced than planned)

Available Online: 

Remembrance Sunday service from St Andrew's Sampford Courtenay. Recorded today and available via the link below and on

The order of service for this service is also available for download below.

4pm on Sunday: Tea, Cake and Quiz on Zoom. Anyone from across our churches can join in. Put the kettle on, fire up the device, fetch some cake, and Zoom in for some fellowship and fun. Hosted by Wez Cutler. Zoom invitation below...

You can join the conversation before 4pm if you want to chat to others. 

We won't be emailing links to services out every week. It will all go on

Just keep checking there.

Let's have a faithful, friendly and fruitful lockdown. 




Topic: St Peter's Zoom Quiz

Time: Nov 8, 2020 04:00 PM London

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 693 899 6292

Passcode: john316



Picture of St. Andrews Church

The planned Remembrance Service for Sunday is now cancelled and there are no services planned until 6th December. There will be filming taking place during the closed period for release on You Tube and funerals can still take place with a maximum of 30 mourners.


However, the usual Armistice Service on 11th November by the War Memorial will go ahead commencing at 10.50am. Rita will be leading it and will follow more or less the same format as in previous years. Reading the names of the fallen from the Parish and the laying of wreaths. In addition John Courtie will play the Last Post.

Picture of a cross in front of a blue sky with clouds with the words Sunday Service across the centre

Hello everyone,

See here a service recorded this morning at St Peter's...

Having sent links out by email to services every week since March, it's now time for a change. I don't want to fill up your inbox indefinitely!

A weekly service will still be recorded and uploaded to my YouTube channel as normal, and the link will be posted weekly on the St Peter's website, but I will not now email you the link directly. Further emails will be for information only.

So from next Sunday (6th Sept), please go here to find the link to the latest service....

(If you would still prefer me to email you the link directly, please reply to this and I will.)


Some other bits of info...

Accommodation for the new Connect trainee has now been found in Hatherleigh.

Please continue to pray for Fran Bliss who heads off to Bristol to start her ordination training next weekend. 

Sunday Club will restart in the Mortimer Room on Sundays from Sunday 13th September. With schools going back we feel we can now do this. There will be very limited toys, craft activities and resources used, all of which will either be taken home by the children that attend or cleaned afterwards if remaining in church. It will be fun, safe and stripped back. 





Picture of a cross in front of a blue sky with clouds with the words Sunday Service across the centre

Hello everyone,

Thank you to John, Rita and Wez for taking the services last Sunday. 

Here is the Traditional Communion service recorded today (Sunday 23rd August) at St Peters:


Next Sunday: (30th August)

9.30am Parish Communion (Common Worship) at Sampford Courtenay

11am Informal Communion at North Tawton


I'm still on the hunt for....


Accommodation required for a Connect Trainee:

Connect is the Christian schools work project that works in our local secondary schools. They are a mission partner of St Peter's Church, and I am a trustee. 

They have a new trainee coming to work in Okehampton College in September (although her start is going to be a bit protracted due to Covid restrictions at the College).

Her name is Kyra Morley. She is about to be 19, and comes from Bristol. 

She is in need of bed and board in North Tawton, Hatherleigh or Okehampton with a Christian family/household. She would need a room preferably furnished (bed, wardrobe etc)  and access to a bathroom and kitchen. 

The host household would receive a grant from Connect of £300 a month towards her keep.

If you have a room that could work for her, please get in touch with me.



Picture of a cross in front of a blue sky with clouds with the words Sunday Service across the centre

Hello folks,

The service from St Peter's this morning (9th Aug) linked here:

Sorry for standing in the wrong place for a bit of it! I did realise after a while.

Next Sunday (16th Aug): Rita, John and Wez taking the reigns for a Sunday as the Weldons will be away.

9.30am Parish Communion at Bondleigh

11am Family Service at North Tawton

6pm Evensong at Sampford Courtenay



Picture of a cross in front of a blue sky with clouds with the words Sunday Service across the centre

Hello folks,

Please find here the service from St Peter's this morning...

A couple of lovely new songs in this one. Original videos here...

Hymn of the Saviour

Jesus Strong and Kind




You will have seen in the announcements by Boris on Friday that from next weekend (8th Aug) face-coverings are now mandatory in almost all indoor venues, including churches.


So please ignore my previous email about this. From now on and until further notice we should be wearing face-coverings in church services. 


This will be disappointing news for some, and good news for others, especially those who have stayed away from church thus far and now may feel more inclined to come.


A plea.... if this is disappointing news for you, please keep coming to church in the weeks ahead. It would be really sad if the numbers in church reduced due to people not wanting to come wearing a mask. We've made good progress back towards fully functioning services in the last month, so let's keep it going, for the sake of one another at least.


If for whatever reason you are unable to wear a face-covering, or you forget to bring one with you to church, please come in anyway. It is really not a problem. There is plenty of room to increase distancing if necessary. 

Those leading services will not be wearing face-coverings as they make clear communication very difficult especially for the hard of hearing, and for those watching online. Service leaders will simply increase our distancing even further.

Rest assured, even before these extra changes, the measures we have in church (distancing, hand-hygene, no singing, and plenty of ventilation) mean that the environment you are entering in church is as safe as it can possibly be.



Picture of a cross in front of a blue sky with clouds with the words Sunday Service across the centre

Hello everyone

It was great to see so many at Bondleigh last Sunday for the Big Sing. Well done for braving the downpour we had at the start!

This Sunday (2nd Aug) we are back to the post-lockdown Sunday set up with services in all four churches... and we are starting a new Sunday teaching series on Parables that will take us to Harvest.

9.30am Parish Communion at Bondleigh

9.30am Morning Worship at Sampford Courtenay

11am Morning Worship at North Tawton

3pm Evensong with Communion at Honeychurch



You will be aware that face-coverings are now mandatory in shops and on public transport. They are not mandatory in churches, but the Government and Church of England are now encouraging their use in church.

Having had discussions with other clergy in the diocese and with our church wardens here, we feel we should pass on this advice to you, but we will allow you to make your own decisions about it. 

Those leading services will not be wearing masks because they make clear communication very difficult. We will simply further increase our distancing from the nearest people in church when speaking. 

Various other indoor locations have been given exemptions due to either their size or because distancing measures can easily be put in place, or both. (eg. cinemas, pubs and theatres).

We are confident, as are most churches in Devon, that the distancing, cleaning and hand-sanitising measures we already have in place in our large airy buildings are sufficient that the risks are minimal in church.



Picture of a cross in front of a blue sky with clouds with the words Sunday Service across the centre

Dear all,

The service from St Peter's this morning....


Next Sunday.... (11am on 26th July) The Bondleigh Big Sing (Bondleigh Patronal Service):

Outdoors in the farmyard next to St James Church we will have the opportunity to sing God's praises together for the first time since March. Lots of classic well-known hymns (new and old), some reflections from the Bible, and prayer.

Please bring a deckchair with you and a flask of tea/coffee if you wish.

Parking and access to the yard: Coming down the lane from the Winkleigh road, please take the back entrance to the Barton (sign-posted) on the left just before you get to the village. Park in the back yard and walk round the corner (with your deckchair) to the main yard. 

Drive-in church option: If you want to stay in your car for the service please arrive by 10.30am and we will make sure you get a prime spot to park in the main yard. 

Obviously we are praying for a dry day, but we will only cancel if it looks totally horrendous (!) So maybe umbrellas at the ready. 

See you then, if not before.


Picture of a cross in front of a blue sky with clouds with the words Sunday Service across the centre

Hi everyone,

Please find today's service here... (Sunday 12th July)

We used this lovely song (We have a Lamb) in the service today, written in lockdown, based on Revelation 7:17. The original video is here...


The full audio of the service will available shortly here:


Next Sunday (19th July):

9.30am Parish Communion at Bondleigh

11am All-Age Family Service at North Tawton

6pm Evensong at Sampford Courtenay (please note the half hour earlier start)


Sunday 26th July:

11am The Bondleigh Big Sing... celebration service for Bondleigh Patronal outside in the farmyard at the Barton next to St James Church.

If we meet outside and sit with distancing measures in place, we can sing! So please bring your own deckchair and a flask of tea/coffee. Those who wish to stay in their cars will still be able to join in.

Pray for good weather!





Picture of a cross in front of a blue sky with clouds with the words Sunday Service across the centre

Hello all,

It was great to see lots of you in church today. I've just got back from Honeychurch and I'd say about 75% of our regular congregation came back to church today across all four churches. 

It feels great to have services happening again in our buildings... with people actually present! And the distancing measures and hand-sanitsing was pretty easy to do.

We made an audio recording of the full service from North Tawton this morning. That will appear on the website shortly.

Here is a video of the service from North Tawton this morning... a slightly abridged version of the full service.


Next Sunday (12th July)...

9.30am Parish Communion at Sampford Courtenay

11am Informal Communion at North Tawton





Hello all,

Please find here a service for this Sunday (28th June).


Also attached, a Be Still prayer sheet prepared by Rita.


The July edition of Roundabout is out now. Copies can be collected from the church porch in Sampford Courtenay or the Town Hall steps in North Tawton. Bondleigh's have been delivered. 


Please remember Fran Bliss in your prayers this week. She begins her BAP (Bishop's Advisory Panel) on Monday for selection towards ordination training. Big week for her! And it's all being done via Zoom rather than residentially.  


All four of our churches will reopen for public worship next weekend (Sunday 5th July). 


Next Sunday (5th July) we will have the following services:


9.30am Morning Worship at Sampford Courtenay

9.30am Communion at Bondleigh

11am Morning Worship at North Tawton

3pm Evensong with Communion at Honeychurch


We look forward to welcoming you back.

If you have not done so already, please refer to the attached document "Information for the Congregation" as to how you can come back to church services safely, and/or watch this video which covers the same information.... (in a far more interesting way!)

There has been some speculation in the media about whether singing in church will be allowed. There is as yet no official word from the Church of England about this. If allowed, we will be having some congregational singing in services, but less than normal. 

We fully appreciate that not everyone will feel able to come back to church services immediately, and please don't feel under any pressure to do so. We will still be producing online content so that you can join in worship remotely. We are working on this being a live-stream of the services in North Tawton. Please bear with us as we get this functioning over the next few weeks. 



Dear all,

Please follow the link for a service recorded at St Andrew's Sampford Courtenay for this Sunday... Trinity 2, Sunday 21st June.

Revd John Courtie speaks about "gentleness"... another aspect of the Fruit of the Spirit. 

Thank you to all those involved. For the first time since March, this one has some live music in it.


Returning to church this summer:

All four of our church buildings are now open for private prayer during the day. 

Back in May, the Government stated that it was their intention to allow churches to reopen for public worship over the weekend of 4/5 July. This remains the case, but the date has not been confirmed yet.

So it is our intention to restart services that weekend if allowed, but we may not be able to confirm this until just a few days beforehand. The recent experience of zoos and museums has been that the Gov. gives very little prior notice!

So we are ready to go on 5th July, with services in all four churches (as we would normally do on a 1st Sunday) but we may not get the final go ahead until a few days beforehand. We'll let you know.

There is a chance we will have to remain closed for longer, but all the indications appear to be that 5th July remains the restart date.

Over the last 6 weeks, the wardens and I have been putting together a Restart Plan for our churches. It has been formulated in line with Church of England guidance and risk assessment. 

A vital part of the plan is how we all behave when we come back to church services and events. 

So, there is something really important that each of you can do to make sure we can open as swiftly and safely as possible.... Please read the attached "Information for the Congregation".

Now, like me, you might be slightly fed up with "advice" at the moment. I feel like I have been drowning in it since March.

But the issues remain important, so we have prepared the following "Public Information Film" based on the attached information. Please either read the attached information or watch the video, or both. 

Thank you to Emily, Samuel and Olivia for their help with this. Much more fun than homeschooling!

Once services restart, we will continue to post content online for those who will need to stay away for longer. 

This content will be either prerecorded services much like we have been doing, or edited highlights of Sunday services, or live streaming of Sunday services. We are working on the latter at the moment, but we need to get a Wi-Fi connection into St Peter's.

In the meantime, do stay in touch. Really looking forward to seeing you soon.



Dear all,

Please find a service for this Sunday linked below. 

Service for Trinity 1 from St Peter’s North Tawton

Thank you to Danny Semorad for leading the prayers in this one. Danny mentions John Horne in the prayers... a long standing member of the village at Sampford Courtenay who has been ill for some time.

Sadly, subsequent to this recording, John has died. So please remember Maureen his wife, and their son Martin in your prayers. Thank you.

Next Sunday we will have a recorded service from St Andrew's Sampford Courtenay, which will feature a few more familiar faces... John Courtie and a small group of singers.

Re-opening on Monday:

I am pleased to report that all four of our churches will be re-opening from Monday morning (15th June) for private prayer and small funerals. Please do drop in when you wish. 

There will be hand sanitizer at each door, and please observe 2m distancing if anyone else is there too. All churches have been thoroughly cleaned.  

As has always been the case up until March this year, SC and HC are kept unlocked at all times. BL and NT are unlocked during the day.  


We are still working towards a 5th July start but this is not confirmed yet. As Zoos and Parks have found this week, we may get the go ahead only a few days beforehand.

Please don't feel under any pressure to come back to church immediately if that would not be wise for you or your household, but I know many in our congregations are really looking forward to seeing each and gathering for worship again.

So we will endeavour to restart services as soon as we are permitted.

In view of this, there will be some "Information for the Congregation" coming to you all on email (or by post for non-emailers) in the next week so that we can all be suitably prepared for church gatherings again. It is really important that you read this. 

Have a great weekend.




Picture of Assistant Minister holding traditional communion service inside of Honeychurch Church

Dear all,

We went to Honeychurch this time. See here....

Traditional communion (BCP)  from St Mary’s Honeychurch for Sunday 7th June, Trinity Sunday

We're still aiming for a July 5th restart of "normal" services. But not confirmed yet. We are still waiting on Gov and Church of England confirmation about places of worship. But if Ikea can now be open...! (I'm sure you follow my thinking.)

I'll keep you posted. 

In the meantime, now that restrictions are easing a bit, look out for a few other familiar faces getting involved in our online services over the next couple of weeks. 

Do keep prayerful and positive. We're getting through this!




Dear all,

All-age Family Service for Pentecost (Sunday 31st May) from St Peter’s North Tawton....

...with action songs. (Emily is far better at them than me!)

I hope you are having a lovely weekend. 



Hello church folks,

Two videos for you to enjoy today....

Firstly, Be Still with Rita from St Andrew's Sampford Courtenay, including the hymn The Lord's My Shepherd by Stuart Townend (1996) Thankyou Music.

The prayer sheet is also attached so you can follow along with Rita.

She also refers at the end to the UK Blessing sung by members of 85 different churches around the UK... gorgeous. See here:

Secondly, What I'm missing about church during lockdown part 4:

Includes the hymn May the Mind of Christ My Saviour by Mark Petersen (1997) Emu Music

Couple of other things...

1. Dog walking.... Julie Bailey and Carolyn King have been helping a lady in North Tawton by walking her dog for her. If you can offer the odd day to help them out that would be much appreciated. Either contact them directly (details in the St Peter's directory) or via me. (Half an hour walk with a very easy dog)

2. Face-masks... Rachelle Samllacombe is offering to make church members a face-mask if you would like one.  Do contact her direct (details in the St Peter's directory) or I can pass on the request.


Coming for this Sunday.... all-age Family Service style service for Pentecost.




Hello everyone,

Service for the Sunday after Ascension - 24th May 2020 from St Peter’s North Tawton... see here:

Coming over the next couple of weeks... Be Still prayer sheet, a service for all ages for Pentecost, a service from St Mary's Honeychurch for Trinity Sunday.

And with quite a bit to work out in the meantime....

Coming in early June (we think): our churches re-opening for solitary prayer, small weddings, and small funerals (with distancing measures in place)

Coming in early July (we think): our churches re-opening for services (with distancing measures in place)

If the above happens to this timetable (and nothing is confirmed yet) then we intend to continue to post content online as well for those that feel they cannot come back to church immediately, and for those in the wider community who have been tuning into our online services.

Have a lovely weekend.




Morning all,

Happy Ascension day!

See a service from Sampford Courtenay here.... with Rita and John Courtie.

The writer to the Hebrews tells us... (of Jesus)...

"Such a high priest meets our need - one who is holy, blameless, pure, set apart from sinners, exalted above the heavens." (7:26)




Dear all,

What I’m missing about church during lockdown... part 3, with cake!

Ascension Day service coming in a couple of days too, with a message from John Courtie.




Hello everyone,

Please find here a service for this Sunday (17th May) Rogation....


Couple of other things...

Foodbank.... and dog walking

It's been great to be able to take a car load of donated food from the church porch at St Peter's to Okehampton Foodbank each week. Today when I was there, the staff told me about a lady from North Tawton who lives in Butts Way who is a regular client at the food bank.

She is shielding and unable to leave her house at the moment, which means she has regular food delivered to her from the foodbank. She has a dog (friendly apparently) that she is paying to have walked each day because she cannot walk it herself, and the expense is contributing to her need for food from the foodbank. Could anyone help with dog walking? Please get in touch with me and I will get you more details.



I hesitate to mention money at this difficult time, but if you are a regular giver to one of our four churches please would you consider your giving at this time. Some of our costs will have reduced in recent weeks due to lack of services and other meetings (eg. heating and clergy expenses) but most of our costs will be unaffected, particular the big ones like insurance and common fund (the share we pay to the diocese).

Standing orders will have continued, so if you give to church that way.... thank you very much. 

But "Sunday giving" (cash collections and the envelope scheme) has reduced nearly to nil since mid March, for obvious reasons. 

If you are a "Sunday giver" please would you consider either switching to give by standing order (even if it is just a small amount or a small proportion of what you would normally give), or keep aside your regular Sunday cash gifts so that they can be given later in the year.

Of course, the usual stipulations still apply... please give cheerfully and in proportion to your income. I fully understand that this crisis is having significant financial implications for some people. And of course it is more important that your household is fed!

However, if you would like information about setting up a standing order to any of our churches, please contact the respective church treasurer.... (I can supply their contact details on request if you need them).

Colin Pimlott (North Tawton) 

Chris Owen (Sampford Courtenay)

Jane Semorad (Bondleigh)

Claire Weeks (Honeychurch)

Thanks all.

Happy Rogation,


Hello everyone,

The next Sunday service will be coming soon, probably late tomorrow or Saturday morning.

In the meantime, here is the next in the series "What I'm missing about church during lockdown... fellowship with others."

It includes the song... O Church Arise by Stuart Townend and Keith Getty. See full version here....


Best wishes,


Hello folks

Hopefully you have seen the VE Day service we recorded for church and community a few days ago. If not, follow the link on here...


But I thought you regular church folk might want something else too this weekend. So here is something....

What I am missing about church during lockdown... Part 1: Praise and Worship as a Congregation.

It includes a bit of Psalm 147, some prayers, and clips of the following songs....

Living Hope by Phil Wickham (2018) Bethel Music

In Christ alone by Stuart Townend and Keith Getty (2001) Thankyou Music

Only a Holy God by Michael Farren, Jonny Robinson, Dustin Smith, Rich Thompson (2016) CityAlight Music 





Dear church family,

Please find here a link to a community Service of Commemoration and Thanksgiving for VE Day+75, recored in North Tawton and Sampford Courtenay (with "flypast"!).

See here also....

Thank you to the cast.... Rita, Samuel, Emily and the birds.

Thanks also to....

Sophie Hawking (Choreography)

Barry Tarr (Editor and Technical Support)

The Wind (Background Effects)

God (Lighting and everything else)




Rev'd Nick Weldon

The Rectory


North Tawton

Devon. EX20 2EX

t. 01837 880183

m. 07970 984190

Hello church family,

Please find here a service of traditional communion for this Sunday (3rd May), recorded on Friday in Bondleigh.

Do continue to make use of the resources on the St Peter's Church website.... there is lots there... Be Still's, prayer resources, links to good spiritual reading, and links to worship music of various kinds.

Coming next week... a service of thanksgiving for VE Day+75. This service will be especially suitable for the wider community, so please think about who you could pass the link on to. The plan is to film it midweek next week so it is available for Friday 8th May. 

Please continue to look out for friends and neighbours, even as restrictions begin to ease in the coming weeks. Many in our community will still choose to remain at home.

Hope to "see you" soon,


Dear all,

Please find here a service for the 2nd Sunday after Easter, recorded today at St Peter's.

(Apologies if it doesn't start at the start. Still haven't mastered how to make it do that yet! Just drag it back to the start and it will play fine.)

Please also find attached a latest Be Still for personal prayer and reflection.

Do stay "in touch",







Rev'd Nick Weldon

The Rectory


North Tawton

Devon. EX20 2EX

t. 01837 880183

m. 07970 984190

Hi everyone

Hope you are all keeping well, safe and occupied!

Normally, Be Still would be held this Thursday,23rd April, and so I have attached a copy of some prayers and readings.

I will leave some copies in Sampford Courtenay church porch. If you are aware of those not on email who might like a copy, please would you contact them (electronically or by phone!) and let them know.

Easter blessings!


Hello everybody,

Here is a link to the next Sunday service... for Sunday 19th April, the 1st Sunday after Easter.


Stay safe,


Happy Easter!

Sorry this has taken us a few hours to get uploaded... issues at YouTube... they've been eating too much chocolate!

Here is a service for Easter Day from St Peter's North Tawton...


Here is the final 7 words from the cross....






Hello everyone,

We may not be able to meet face to face today, or indeed on Easter Sunday, but nevertheless I pray that this will still be a truly blessed Good Friday and Easter for us all.

Here are a few things to help with that...

Another daily devotional recorded today... (The final one will appear on my YouTube channel tomorrow)

Here is a great illustrated poem suitable for all ages that explains how Good Friday is a good day....

For something a bit more traditional... Some lovely videos here of the choir at St Andrew's Cathedral in Sydney singing some classic Easter hymns... all conducted by Ross Cobb, a former colleague of mine.

Recorded just before shutdown in Australia.

There will a service for Easter Day uploaded first thing on Easter morning. It's going to involve all the Weldon's this time (!) and hopefully no lawnmowers.


FOOD BANK... thank you to those of you still putting donations in the box in the church porch at St Peter's. Please keep it up. I took this week's donations into Okehampton Food Bank this morning. 

Usually they do an average of 14 food parcels a week. This has risen to 40 each week since mid-March.



Hello everyone,

A couple more daily devotionals here...

and here....

There will be a 3 more coming over the next few days, and there's lots of other resources for prayer and worship for Holy Week via the links on here:

Maundy Thursday Prayer Book Communion will appear on my Youtube channel tomorrow, and linked from the St Peter's website also.

(Things to look out for on the video... birds tweeting, the space hopper, and the chap mowing the churchyard!) 

I hope everyone is well. Please let Rita or me know if you are unwell, or in need of anything. 




Hello everyone,

I'm glad lots of you, along with the birds in my garden, have been enjoying the services we have been uploading. Lots more stuff to come this week....

Including some short daily devotionals for Holy Week (called "7 words from the cross") the first two of which are here...

and here...

Also, Rita has produced Stations of the Cross in document form for you to download below.




Hello folks,

Here is the latest video service for this Sunday... Palm Sunday (5th April 2020).

This Sunday marks the beginning of Holy Week, and we are going to try to make available all the services and resources we would have produced this week anyway.

They will appear throughout the week on the St Peter's Church website:

Compline (Night Prayer) which would have been on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings at Sampford Courtenay... Rita has produced this in document form below. 

Maundy Thursday Communion... we will upload a videoed Prayer Book (1662) communion service ready for this Thursday.

Good Friday... Rita will produced a document version of Stations of the Cross, and I will upload a videoed Thought for Good Friday.

Easter Day... we will upload a videoed Informal Communion with sermon ready for next Sunday.

Stay well, and stay in touch.


Nick and Rita


Rev'd Nick Weldon

The Rectory


North Tawton

Devon. EX20 2EX

t. 01837 880183

m. 07970 984190

Hello folks,

I hope you are well.... (that phrase has slightly greater significance now doesn't it!?)

Here's the second of our recorded services. And this one is on video! Rita and I recorded this today (Friday 27th March) for use this weekend. I hope you find it helpful at this troubling time.


We will keep doing these and a mid-week "thought for the day" until such time as we can meet normally again. This video and previous recordings can all be found at

We said last week that we hoped to do something outdoors in the churchyards on Easter Day. That was before Boris announced the shutdown last weekend. So unfortunately, we cannot now have any kind of physical gathering on Easter Day.

Available below are some resources for personal prayer and study, including the prayers Rita prays in this week's video service.

Stay well

Stay at home

Stay exercising once a day

Stay 2 meters away

Stay kind

Stay prayerful

Stay in Christ and not in worry

Stay in touch

Stay cool 




Nick and Rita


Latest thought for the day below...


I will build my church


Thought for the day by Revd Nick Weldon 1st April 2020



Services for Palm Sunday, Mandy Thursday, and Easter Day to follow in the next 10 days.